The Tour of Britain is now firmly part of the professional calendar and has risen to be just shy of Worldtour status. It wasn’t always… Read More »Tour of Britain Cycling Race – A History
Men’s cycling is where my interest started, by watching the 1996 Tour de France.
Since then I’ve watched a lot of it, have my favourite riders and teams and can have a reasonable go at predicting results.
I try and write as many race previews as I can to help with fantasy teams and give information to those interested. Particularly with women’s racing too.
You can read all my posts on men’s cycling below – always let me know if you think my predictions are wildly off!
Driedaagse Brugge-De Panne began as a 3-day stage race. The first stage would take riders away from De Panne on the North Sea coast towards the hills of the Flemish Ardennes. The second stage would usually
see riders head back towards the coast. The third day would be split between a short start in the morning and a small time trial in the afternoon.
Brabantse Pijl had its first edition in 1961, the race started and finished in Brussels. The first winner was Pino Cerami, who now has a race named after him – the GP Cerami. Pijl is the Flemish word for arrow, making it the Brabant version of Flèche Wallonne.
It’s quite hard to pick a rider type for someone that won Milan San Remo, the Giro d’Italia and Il Lombardia. Our modern rider types either don’t fit or don’t do justice. Girardengo found the early part of his career interrupted by World War I but he’d already won Giro stages and the National Championship by the time war took over.
Liège Bastogne Liège (La Doyenne) is the oldest monument in cycling, with its first running in 1892. Although it was for amateurs at the time and Spa replaced Liège. 1894 saw professionals allowed to race for the first time and then bizarrely it wasn’t held for another 14 years.
Rik van Looy was like the Peter Sagan of his day. Able to sprint but also able to dominate the Classics. He won an Olympic Gold in his last year as an amateur in 1952 before really announcing himself in the pro peloton by
winning Gent Wevelgem and Scheldeprijs in 1956.
The race began in 1936 but moved around a lot until settling on its modern Identity of finishing on the Mur de Huy. At various points the race started in Tournai, Mons, Charleroi, Liège, Verviers, Huy & Spa. For a while the race started from Charleroi (or nearby) and then headed east for a finishing circuit or two around Huy.
Rik Van Steenbergen started his career as World War 2 was coming to an end. He had to use a forged ID card in order to turn professional in 1942. In 1944, aged just 20, he won the Tour of Flanders for the first time. 2 years later he won his 2nd Tour of Flanders.